Monday, December 1, 2008

Seeing Christmas Through African Eyes

As you know, I finished my fundraiser and raised $1,000 dollars. Now that we are going into Christmas time, I'm starting to think about Christmas differently. Now, I realize that gifts don't really make you happy. The whole point of Christmas is to be with others and give back.

Now that I have done the fundraiser, "Ali's Big Christmas Gift", I am as happy as I can be. This year we are not really getting lots of gifts, but while my mom and dad were telling us, I was thinking the whole time "I don't need big gifts I have exactly what I need and more." This time of year is stressful ( to buy all the gifts), but also a very joyful kind of year (to celebrate God). I see things differently, when I think of the kids I met in Africa (who have nothing to start with) and think that some of them are not going to get anything for Christmas!

For example, before she went to Acres of Love, a 12 year-old girl that I met in South Africa would have described her "normal" Christmas day like this (they don't know what happened to her mom):
  1. Feed siblings (if they have any food),
  2. Get abused by Father
  3. Go to school (if they can afford it)
  4. Feed siblings (again if they have any food)
  5. Watch her siblings being abused.
This is so different than our Christmas day, which is to open presents, eat yummy breakfast, spend the whole day how you want it, then go to bed. Every time something reminds me of Africa I think of the parents who have to abandon their kids because they are going to die, and the kids who are being abused, or acting like parents to their siblings. What saddens me so much are the kids around the age of eight who usually have to act like the mom and dad to a house of four or five younger siblings!

So this Christmas, aware of how much I have already, I am going to look at it as a giving Christmas not a taking one. This Christmas I decided to look at Christmas differently than everyone else. I would encourage for you to look at it different too.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Ali's Big Christmas Gift

Ever since I came back from Africa people have been telling me to tell my stories. I didn't think I would have many stories but now that I'm back I have so many to tell, so that's why I started this blog.

When I got home I said to myself I can't change the world but I can do the best I can. So I decided to raise money and send 1 goat and 10 chickens through Y-Malawi and World Vision with the $200 dollars I was going to raise. Now that I am done I'm able to buy :
  • 2 goats
  • 1 sheep
  • 10 chickens
  • 1 cow
  • 20 fruit trees
The grand total for all of this is $1,000 dollars. I raised all the money, but also with allot of generous friends.

I called this project "Ali's Big Christmas Gift". Now that I am almost done I feel so good inside and have hope that one day families in Africa will have a better life just like me.